English Premier League: Week Eight Preview

Week Eight PreviewOur football expert previews the English Premier League round eight action which kicks off on Saturday 14 October 2017. 

Premier League football returns this weekend as gameweek eight kicks off with a humdinger of a clash with Manchester United battling Liverpool at Anfield in Saturday's early kick-off.
Later in the day, Chelsea have the luxury of playing bottom side Crystal Palace, in-form Manchester City entertain Stoke and Tottenham target their first league win at Wembley against Bournemouth, while Arsenal look to secure their first away win of the season against Watford in the late kick-off.

Here are my predictions for the eighth round of the Premier League:

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Saturday 14 October

Liverpool 33/20 | Draw 23/10 | Manchester United 33/20
This will be Manchester United’s first real test of the season. There’s been a lot of fuss made about Jose Mourinho’s men and while they have been very impressive, they’re yet to play any of the big teams. Jurgen Klopp’s side are unbeaten at Anfield this season. They beat Crystal Palace 1-0 and thrashed Arsenal 4-0, before being held to a 1-1 draw by Burnley.

United are unbeaten in 10 matches in all competitions this season with nine wins, including six on the spin. Mourinho’s men have dropped just two points in the league, in a 2-2 draw at Stoke last month. United are unbeaten in their last three league encounters at Anfield, winning twice. The Red Devils are well worth a punt at 17/10.

Burnley 31/20 | Draw 43/20 | West Ham 37/20
Burnley have made an impressive start to the season. After seven games, Sean Dyche's men sit sixth in the table with 12 points – having already played the heavyweight likes of Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham and Everton.

West Ham have improved on their poor showing in August where they conceded 10 goals in the process of losing their opening three matches. In September, the Hammers recorded wins over Huddersfield and Swansea, earned a point at West Brom and conceded just three goals – all of them in a 3-2 home defeat by Tottenham – in four top-flight matches. I’m expecting a tight affair, but with home advantage, back the Clarets on the Win/Draw Double Chance at 4/10.

Crystal Palace 7/1 | Draw 36/10 | Chelsea 4/10
Chelsea have a chance to return to winning ways when they visit bottom side Crystal Palace. Antonio Conte's men were beaten 1-0 at home by Manchester City before the international break as Kevin De Bruyne came back to haunt his former club with a stunning goal.

The Blues have won all three of their away games this season, beating Tottenham and Leicester City by 2-1 scorelines, before recording an emphatic 4-0 victory at Stoke thanks to a hat-trick from Alvaro Morata. The Spaniard looks set to miss this clash due to a hamstring injury, but the champions can cope without him against Roy Hodgson's side. The Eagles have lost all seven of their matches, shipping 17 goals without finding the net. Chelsea are a banker bet at 4/10, but I’m backing them on the (-1) Handicap at 21/20.

Manchester City 1/7 | Draw 7/1 | Stoke City 15/1
Manchester City top the league on goal difference ahead of rivals Manchester United, with 19 points collected from seven fixtures. Pep Guardiola's side are enjoying an eight-game winning streak in all competitions. In that run, they smashed Liverpool 5-0 at the Etihad Stadium and recorded a 1-0 win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge before the international break.

Stoke ended a five-match winless streak as Peter Crouch came off the bench to score an 85th-minute winner in a 2-1 victory at home to Southampton. Mark Hughes’ men will be hoping to build on that result, but they’re yet to win on the road, losing two of their three matches. City, on the other hand, have won their last three home games, scoring 12 without reply. Back Guardiola's side to win on the Half-time/Full-time double at 9/20.

Swansea City 23/20 | Draw 21/10 | Huddersfield 11/4
Swansea are 18th in the table after picking up just five points from seven games. The Welsh outfit failed to win a league game last month, suffering three defeats from four matches. Paul Clement’s side will be desperate to record their first home win of the season. In their three games at the Liberty Stadium – which all ended in defeat – they scored just once and let in seven goals.

Huddersfield are winless in five matches, suffering three defeats – including a 1-0 loss at Crystal Palace in the Carabao Cup. They were thumped 4-0 at home by Tottenham before the international break and David Wagner will be hoping for a positive response from his players. I’m going for Under 2.5 Goals at 5/10.

Tottenham 1/5 | Draw 6/1 | Bournemouth 12/1
Tottenham will be targeting their first league win at Wembley Stadium when they take on Bournemouth. Mauricio Pochettino's side are third in the standings with 14 points from seven matches, five points behind joint-leaders Manchester City and Manchester United. Spurs are unbeaten in eight matches in all competitions with six wins, including four on the spin.

Bournemouth are 19th in the table, having taken just four points from seven matches. Those points have come at the Vitality Stadium with Eddie Howe's side losing all three of their away games. I’m backing Spurs on the (-1) Handicap at 5/10.

Watford 36/10 | Draw 31/10 | Arsenal 13/20
Arsenal will be looking to record their first away win of the season when they visit Watford in Saturday’s final fixture. After back-to-back defeats away at Stoke and Liverpool, Arsene Wenger’s side seem to have found their rhythm, going unbeaten in four matches without conceding a goal. They recorded wins over Bournemouth, West Brom and Brighton, while earning an impressive goalless draw at Chelsea.

Watford are yet to win at home this season and coach Marco Silva will be desperate for that to change. After holding Liverpool to a 3-3 stalemate, they had to settle for a goalless draw against newcomers Brighton and suffered a humiliating 6-0 defeat against Manchester City – all at Vicarage Road. Since the Hornets returned to the Premier League two years ago, Arsenal won both of their matches at Vicarage Road, netting three goals in each match. I’m going for the Gunners to secure maximum points.

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Sunday 15 October

Brighton 22/10 | Draw 21/10 | Everton 27/20
Brighton are above Everton in the Premier League table on goal difference, both sides earning seven points from as many games. With both teams on such an equal footing at the moment, it’ll be interesting to see who will play the better football, be the better side and eventually pick up those valuable points. The Seagulls have won back-to-back matches at home, beating West Brom 3-1 and Newcastle 1-0.

The Toffees, on the other hand, are yet to win away from home this season, however, they’ve had to travel to the two Manchester giants and champions Chelsea. I’m going for Both Teams to Score at 19/20.

Southampton 8/10 | Draw 5/2 | Newcastle 7/2
Southampton are struggling to find their rhythm with pressure mounting on coach Mauricio Pellegrino. The Saints were beaten 2-1 at Stoke before the international break, their third defeat from four matches and second loss in a row. They’ve struggled to score goals, having failed to find the back of the net in four of their seven matches.

Newcastle did well to hold Liverpool to a 1-1 draw last time out following their 1-0 defeat at Brighton. Prior to those games, Rafa Benitez's men were riding a three-match winning streak, having beaten West Ham, Swansea and Stoke. However, Newcastle have scored just once on the road and with the Saints struggling up front, my tip is Under 2.5 Goals at 8/10.

Monday 16 October

Leicester City 19/20 | Draw 47/20 | West Brom 31/10
Leicester City welcome West Brom to the King Power Stadium on Monday night. Craig Shakespeare’s side are 17th on the log after a tough start to the season, facing Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool already. The Foxes have won just once this season, claiming a 2-0 win at home to Brighton in August. Despite their struggles, Jamie Vardy has been in top form, scoring five goals in six outings.

West Brom are winless in their last six matches, including a 2-1 home defeat to Manchester City in the Carabao Cup last month. Tony Pulis’ men have suffered back-to-back defeats on the road against Brighton and Arsenal. It should be a tight affair, but I’m backing Leicester to claim all three points.

TREBLE @ 42/10
Chelsea (-1) Handicap 21/20
Tottenham (-1) Handicap 5/10
Arsenal Win 13/20

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